A Social History of Knowledge, Volume 2: From the Encyclopaedia to Wikipedia

A Social History of Knowledge, Volume 2: From the Encyclopaedia to Wikipedia

Peter Burke


Peter Burke follows up his magisterial Social historical past of information, settling on up the place the 1st quantity left off round 1750 on the e-book of the French Encyclopédie and following the tale via to Wikipedia. just like the earlier quantity, it bargains a social heritage (or a retrospective sociology of information) within the experience that it focuses now not on members yet on teams, associations, collective practices and basic trends.
The booklet is split into three elements. the 1st argues that actions which seem to be undying - accumulating wisdom, analysing, disseminating and making use of it - are in truth time-bound and take diversified types in several classes and areas. the second one half attempts to counter the tendency to jot down a triumphalist background of the 'growth' of data via discussing losses of data and the cost of specialization. The 3rd half bargains geographical, sociological and chronological overviews, contrasting the event of centres and peripheries and arguing that every of the most tendencies of the interval - professionalization, secularization, nationalization, democratization, and so forth, coexisted and interacted with its opposite.

As ever, Peter Burke provides a breath-taking diversity of scholarship in prose of exemplary readability and accessibility. This hugely expected moment quantity might be crucial studying around the humanities and social sciences.

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